Confessions of a Beach Lover

I must confess, I love the beach. Now many of you who have grown up by a beach will agree, but as a skin therapist, aka esthetician, I am really not supposed to be a lover of the sun. I see sun damaged skin all day long at my spas and I see women all day long trying to fix years of sun damage. I can’t help it though, the pure dose of vitamin d gives me such a feeling of euphoria, I become an addict.

The sandy toes, the beach blown hair, the tanned skin, the smell of sunscreen, beach chairs, conversations, the first dip in the Atlantic Ocean, it all reminds me of so much of my lovely past. Hanging out with my mother and my grandmother for hours and hours as they drank their iced tea and smoked their cigarettes during an era gone by. The beach is so much of a happy place for me and my memories that I can’t give it up despite all of its negative press.

So yes I own 2 spas, yes I treat aging skin, yes, I am cautious in the sun, but if you met me you may be surprised at my tan. Be patient with me and try not to sit in judgment though, I wear 30 sunscreen and reapply it every hour. I rarely burn and though I know that it is not the best for my skin, I love the ritual of a great beach day.

It is so important to do things in your life that create tradition and ritual, that create joy. The beach in the New England summer does that for me. I am a purist, I never go into a tanning booth, to me, the tan is about the daily beach going that is so much a part of my childhood.  The beach is about the smells and the people, the taking of that shower after a great day and putting on a lovely sundress. I am not a worrier of wrinkles, if I were I wouldn’t go in the sun ever since that is definitely a huge cause of aging, but there are so many skin therapies that are great for the skin and once beach season is over, I am right back to my daily, weekly and monthly rituals. Wrinkles don’t freak me out, I know they are not for everyone in our crazy planet of skin perfection, but I have to say that when I see a man or a woman who is wrinkled and smiley, there is nothing more beautiful.

To me smiling is the new botox, so beach or no beach, smile more and it will take years off your life.

The days are long gone of baby oil and foil blankets so here are my grown up big girl tips for the beach and the sun.

1.     Apply a 30 sunscreen at least 30 minutes prior to going to the beach. This is what makes it work.

2.     Apply it at least every hour and definitely reapply it after you swim or sweat even if the sunscreen says waterproof or resistant.

3.     I always recommend a high quality sunscreen for the face and chest area to avoid breakouts. I love Ultra Lite 30 by Peter Thomas Roth. If you want to spend the money on your body, go for it, but I personally use the spray sports sunscreens on my body during the whole summer and get great results.

4.     Try to never burn.

5.     After a beach day, take a great shower and when you get out, put some heavy moisturizer on. I actually use an oil, we sell it at the spa and it is inexpensive and fabulous. It is called Jobacare and it is an organic jojoba oil, one of the best lubricants for the skin.

6.     Drink lots of water (yes I know this is obvious, but just a girl to girl reminder)

Enjoy the rest of your summer and see you in the fall.


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